Mourneabbey will be back stronger and better

Mourneabbey will be back stronger and better

Kilkerrin-Clonberne's Hannah Noone and Deirdre Cronin of Mourneabbey

WHEN people look back on the history of ladies football from this era the name of Mourneabbey is sure to feature prominently.

Of course, the great Cork and Dublin sides and Meath winning their first All-Ireland senior title in 2021 will all get the prominence they deserve.

But when it comes to club sides then Mourneabbey will deserve at least a chapter of their own.

Yes they came up short in Saturday's All-Ireland senior club final, losing by 1-11 to 1-7 to Kilkerrin-Clonberne, but their record at senior level since 2014 is second to none.

Since then they have won seven Cork senior titles, seven Munster ones, and two All-Ireland crowns. They have also appeared in four other All-Ireland senior finals, showing the quality and class of this bunch of players.

They are not finished yet and once the dust settles on this long season for them, they have been on the go for must short of a year now, they will prepare and go again.

Does that guarantee them success? Of course not, but one thing that you can be guaranteed – it won't be for lack of effort on their part.

They are a special bunch of players, management, and club.

Kilkerrin-Clonberne's Hannah Noone and Deirdre Cronin of Mourneabbey
Kilkerrin-Clonberne's Hannah Noone and Deirdre Cronin of Mourneabbey

Go down to a training session and at the end you will see Jerry O'Sullivan, father of Meabh, Doireann, Ciara, and Roisin, arriving with soup for all the players and mentors. Just one of many gestures by people around the team to ensure they all try to play their small part in their success.

There are plenty of others helping out at this club and that will continue for many years to come.

For now, they are hurting and like all close-knit groups, they will seek comfort in each other's company over the coming days.

In time they will look back at the final and they will be the first to admit they didn't play anywhere near their potential. That was partly down to a sublime display from their opponents but also from missed opportunities.

They missed chances they would normally convert and they know that at this level you can't afford to do that.

They hit the bar twice and crossbar once as well and late on when they needed a goal to get back in contention Kilkerrin-Clonberne keeper Lisa Murphy saved well with her feet from Anna Ryan.

On another day they would have been in the back of the net and it would probably have led to Mourneabbey retaining their title.

But for now, they need time to heal, before they go again, and have no doubt they will do so with a determination to make up for their loss on Saturday.

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